All 1938 Plymouth trucks had a 116-inch wheelbase. An I-beam axle was used up front, with a 4.1:1 hypoid rear axle. Semi-elliptic springs were mounted at the rear along with Hotchkiss double U-joint drive. Standard tires were 6.00 x 16 size. A three-speed manual transmission was standard, but a four-speed gearbox could be added at extra cost.
For its power plant, Plymouth used an L-head six with a 3-1/8 x 4-3/8 bore and stroke. It produced 70 hp at 3000 rpm. This 201.3-cid flathead had a 5.8:1 compression ratio and produced 70 hp at 3000 rpm. It was the same engine used in Dodge trucks, which made sense as they were in the same family. The Plymouths, in fact, were almost a direct spin-off of their Dodge cousins.
Plymouth produced a total of 4,620 of these 1938 pickups – which were cataloged as “Express” models. That was in addition to 1,601 Commercial Sedans and 95 Chassis-and-Cab trucks. In most published references, Plymouth used the 1,850-lb. weight of the Chassis-and-Cab for all models, but logic would indicate that the Express weighed about the same as a 1938 Dodge pickup, which tipped the scales at 2,700 lbs.
Taillights were strictly optional. If the optional rear bumper was ordered, it partially hid the license plate. The “Plymouth” script was embossed into the center of the tailgate.
Model: 1938 Plymouth Model PT57 Express Engine: 201.3-cid (3-1/8 x 4-3/8) L-head six-cylinder 70-horsepower Wheelbase: 116-inches Serial Number: (Evansville) 9185301 & up; (Los Angeles) 9208201 & up